NOV. 17, 2018


Getting a Driver License or State ID Can Be Quick and Convenient

By Sheri Kajiwara

It’s the end of the notorious long wait in line for your license renewal.

Oahu residents are now offered the convenience of making an advance appointment to renew a driver license or state identification card and be done in under 30 minutes.

Appointments times are the latest customer-service offer to access basic government services more efficiently. Since introducing the new system in April of this year, it has been a game changer for those who use it, providing a quick and convenient way to do business.

We’ve housed all the related tools you’ll need for success on one easy site: license.honolulu.gov where you can: Access our interactive document guide and be comfortable that you have all the necessary documents in hand.

  • Make an appointment up to three months in advance at nine different locations across the island.
  • Find locations and hours. It may be helpful to know that our five driver licensing centers process only licenses and state IDs, so they have the capacity to handle more volume per day. Our Satellite City Halls manage a variety of city services, from vehicle registration and handicap placards, to dog licensing, bill payments and moped and bicycle registrations. Satellites manage a smaller percentage of license and ID renewals.
  • Access application forms and fill them out ahead of time for faster processing.
  • Cancel your unneeded appointment using the confirmation code provided when scheduling. You will help the next person needing an appointment.

When making an appointment on line or via your smartphone, you will be asked to enter a phone number. The last four digits of that number will be yo ur ticket number on site. If it is text-capable, you will receive a text confirmation with a unique code. Save this. That text offers a quick one-click cancellation option at the bottom. Or print out the confirmation code online and save that.

Other helpful tips:

  • Bring a recent vision certificate from your eye doctor and avoid the onsite eye test.
  • Know that temporary paper cards are not acceptable as identification at U.S. airport security checkpoints. As it may take up to six weeks to receive your permanent card in the mail, plan your renewal around your trips. If you have not received your card by then, leave your name and contact at 768-9128 and we’ll check on the status of your envelope. For security reasons, licenses and IDs cannot be mailed to business addresses and they cannot be forwarded to an alternate address. If you did not provide your primary residential address, as recognized by the US post office, the card will be returned to us as undeliverable. You will need to make another visit bringing two new documents showing your valid address and pay $6 for the address to be updated and the card replaced.
  • A license or ID can be renewed six months in advance (still retaining your birthday expiration) so people are encouraged to schedule well ahead of time so the new card is receive before the old one expires. We all need less stress in our lives. Remember, state law does not allow you to drive with an expired license.

Sheri Kajiwara is the director of the City and County of Honolulu Department of Customer Services.


Council Adopts Bill That Would Not Raise Property Taxes for the Rail Project

Councilmember Brandon Elefante announced the Honolulu City Council adopted Bill 42, CD-2, by a vote of 7-2.

“The good news is that passing this legislation today does not raise anyone’s real property taxes. The other good news is that by passing this legislation, the City is in compliance with our partners, the State Legislature, and the Federal Transit Administration,” said Elefante.

He said he voted for the legislation because the bill does not increase anyone’s Real Property Tax and that Act 1 now requires that the City provides administrative costs directly from the City’s budget.

The Federal Transit Administration gave the City a deadline of November 20, 2018, to pass legislation to provide $44 million for administrative costs in the last two fiscal years;

This bill caps the total of City funds for the life of the construction project so that the City pays the minimum of what is required by Act 1.

“The project is in the home stretch and the funding rules have been changed by the State Legislature. The responsible thing to do is to pass this legislation, preserve our partnerships with the State and Federal governments, and finish the project. The consequence of not adopting this bill is that the FTA will stop funding the railproject,” said Elefante.


Hawaii Unemployment at Low 2.3 Percent

The Hawaii State Department of Labor & Industrial Relations (DLIR) announced that the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for October was 2.3 percent compared to 2.2 percent in September. Statewide, 670,400 were employed and 15,750 unemployed in October for a total seasonally adjusted labor force of 686,100. Nationally, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 3.7 percent in October, the same as in September.

Initial claims increased by 207 or 16.2 percent, while weeks claims decreased by 877 or -11.6 percent for unemployment benefits compared to one year ago. Over-the-month initial claims rose by 12.5 percent and weeks claims decreased by 3.0 percent in October 2018.


Hawaii’s Economy Expected to Finish Strong Despite Natural Disasters

Hawaii’s natural disasters and sagging construction have taken a bite out of economic growth, according to the Economic Research Organization at the University of Hawaii’s (UHERO) latest state forecast update.

The volcanic activity on the Big Island and flooding on Kauai and Oahu that received national attention have dealt a setback to tourism. Jobs have been cutback in the construction sector which reached a peak in 2016.

UHERO’s analysis says, however, fundamentals to the local economy look favorable and even with recent job weakness, Hawaii continues posting its lowest unemployment; and tourism is expected to finish the year strong.

Statewide visitor arrivals will advance by more than 6% for this year as a whole. Statewide occupancy rates will remain near 83% throughout the forecast.

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